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Fry tank setup?

Discussion in 'Beginners Corner' started by VITS, Jan 18, 2012.

  1. VITS

    VITS New Member

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    Can some experienced breeders please give me some advice as to how to go about setting a fry grow tank up?

    I have plenty of java moss and frog feet weed available to me, but I am wondering if to use under gravel filter or sponge with no gravel, or not gravel but a type of sand?

    I hatch brine shrimp and have microworms to feed them with, also when do they come away from the mother? What signs do I look for that they need to come away?

    Sorry for the noobie questions but I want to do things with best knowledge?

    If I need to add pics to help answer any questions please ask and I'll put them up.

    Jarrad
  2. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member 5 Year Member

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    This is just my opinion. The most important needs are plenty of quality food and excellent water quality. Ideally, a bare-bottom tank with a sponge filter, and frequent water changes (as often as possible) should do. In my tanks, however, I find that fry grow larger, faster if there is some kind of substrate on the bottom. Maybe they are finding micro-organisms growing on the substrate. My fry do best if I feed small quantities 3 or more times each day. 50% water changes every day will reduce the metabolites produced by the growing fry. This is the ideal. In reality, my fry rarely get this care.:redface:
  3. wethumbs

    wethumbs Active Member 5 Year Member

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    In order to answer that question, you have to set a target growth rate for your fish. For me, my target growth rate target has always been to achieve an 1" fish in 3 to 3.5 months timeframe. This is a very aggressive goal, therefore what works for me may not be what you want to do.

    Bare bottom tank is definitely ideal as you switch from smaller food to larger food. Since it may take abit of time before the fry will accept them eagerly, having a bare bottom tank will help understand if all the food is consumed as well as make it easier to remove the excess. A good light is required for the fry tank so you can easily pick out the 'undesirable' ones. As for filtration, sponge filter is ideal as Mike has suggested. I typically double up on the number of sponge filters in the fry tank to help with the waste load. When to remove fry from the parents depend on the species, without knowing what you are raising it would be difficult to recommend a timeline.
  4. VITS

    VITS New Member

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    Thanks for all the info. The species that have fry at the moment are A. Trifasciata.
  5. dw1305

    dw1305 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Hi all,
    I'd quibble with that statement, I think tanks with a substrate make management of water quality easier, and allow the fish to develop their natural "earth eating" behaviour.

    Personally I'd only recommend bare bottom tanks to people who are extremely conscientious about tank cleaning (I'm not), and very good at water quality control (ditto),and for fish that occupy the middle or upper layers of the water (these don't).

    I would definitely use a thin layer of sand, some leaf litter (and/or) a wodge of Java moss. I like some plants for their beneficial effect on water quality, if you do go "bare bottom" you can always use potted or floating plants.

    cheers Darrel
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  6. Mike Wise

    Mike Wise Moderator Staff Member 5 Year Member

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    Er ... out of curiosity, how much Java Moss is a "wodge".:confused:
  7. Tom C

    Tom C Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    I totally agree with Darrel, I never use bare bottom tanks.
    I have the impression that the fry are much more actively food searching, and therefore grow faster, when kept on fine sand, and with lots of leaf litter which provide them with hiding places, safety and microorganisms to eat.

    Mike: Definition of "Wodge": Brit., Informal: a chunk or lump of something (Not very precise, though :biggrin:)
  8. slimbolen99

    slimbolen99 Active Member 5 Year Member

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    Interesting read. Maybe there is a use for the "used up" oak leaves in our community / breeding tanks after all. Thanks for asking the question, and thanks for the answers.
  9. Bilbo

    Bilbo Member 5 Year Member

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    I never use bare bottom tanks either for fry. Sometimes I will move the fry to a bare bottom tank when they get to 20mm (3/4 inch) stage if I want to really boost growth but mostly I just leave them in an established tank. I get lower mortality rates, better quality and colour that way.
  10. wethumbs

    wethumbs Active Member 5 Year Member

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    It all comes down to what you are keeping and raising. My rams breeders and fry are all in bare bottom tanks. Obviously, the tank bottoms are painted black. The bare-bottom makes it so much easier to clean the tank and catch the hundreds of fry scatter all over the tank. All my Apisto breeders are in thin sand substrate except for "Kelleri" which get a thicker sand substrate as they tend to sift through it alot like the barlowi. Other Apisto needs a thicker sand substrate like diplotania even though they dont sift through it for other reason.
  11. VITS

    VITS New Member

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    So because it is the A. Trifasciata that has the fry when would be the ideal time to take them away. Or what do I look for in the parents that tells me it's time for the fry to be removed.

    For this batch I am going to use one of my ready tanks which I am taking the undergravel filter out and putting the sponge filter in. It has small gravel in it at the moment. I have put a cave in for hiding and java moss plus some small plants as well.

    I have another pair of A. Trifasciata that have had eggs yesterday so I'll try those fry with fine sand sponge filter and the same accessories.
  12. wethumbs

    wethumbs Active Member 5 Year Member

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    You can leave the fry with parents for 4 to 6 weeks before pulling them out. Generally, I would pull a bigger spawn earlier and leave a small spawn with parents longer.
  13. dw1305

    dw1305 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Hi all,
    Mike as Tom says, but it is actually the official SI unit for all moss, moss is measured in "strands" (0.01 of a wodge), "tufts" (0.1 - 0.25 of a wodge), "wodges" (0.5 to x2 of a wodge) and "tankfuls" (~ x10 wodges).

    I appreciate as an American you will probably be happier with the imperial equivalent "A big gnarly handful". I don't think the actual amount is that important, it just needs to be a mass where the fry can get in amongst the strands, rather than a tuft or carpet.

    cheers Darrel
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